USA Swimming Announces Golden Goggles Nominees; Bob Costas To Host

Photo Courtesy: Annie Grevers

USA Swimming announced Wednesday the nominees for the 2016 Golden Goggle awards. The awards will be distributed at a gala Monday, Nov. 21 at the Marriott Marquis in New York City.

This year’s Golden Goggles will mark the 13th consecutive year that the event will be held, and as he has in 2004, 2008 and 2012, Bob Costas will serve as the event’s emcee. Costas has been NBC Sports’ main host for each Summer Olympics since 1992, as well as for each Winter Olympics since 2002.

Unsurprisingly, Michael Phelps and Katie Ledecky are the headliners on this year’s ballot. Phelps, who won five gold medals and one silver at the Olympics in Rio, is up for Male Athlete of the Year, Male Performance of the Year for his gold medal swims in both the 200 fly and 200 IM and Relay Performance of the Year for two of his relay swims from the Games, the men’s 400 free (with Caeleb DresselRyan Held and Nathan Adrian) and 400 medley (with Ryan MurphyCody Miller and Adrian).

Ledecky, meanwhile, will be favored to win both Female Athlete of the Year and Female Performance of the Year for her gold medal swim in the 800 free in Rio—one of Ledecky’s four gold medals from that meet. She has won Athlete of the Year honors each of the last three years and Performance of the Year honors each year since 2012. Ledecky and teammates Allison Schmitt, Leah Smith and Maya DiRado were nominated for Relay Performance of the Year for their gold medal in the 800 free relay in Rio.

Other nominees for Athlete of the Year include DiRado and Simone Manuel on the women’s side, and Adrian, Murphy and Anthony Ervin for the men. All of these athletes won multiple gold medals this summer in Rio.

The Female Race of the Year nominees, aside from Ledecky’s 800 free, included Manuel’s upset win in the women’s 100 free in Rio, DiRado’s stunning performance to take down Katinka Hosszu in the women’s 200 back and Lilly King’s Olympic record and gold medal in the women’s 100 breast.

On the men’s side, the Race of the Year candidates include Phelps’ two gold medals, Murphy’s gold medal in the 100 back (the first Olympic medal of his career) and Ervin’s gold medal in the 50 free, a win that came 16 years after Ervin won his first 50 free gold medal as a 19-year-old in Sydney.

The nominees for the Perseverance Award include Ervin, Kathleen BakerDavid Plummer and Dana Vollmer, while King, Smith, Miller and Josh Prenot were selected as candidates for Breakout Swimmer of the Year.

The six Coach of the Year candidates include Bob Bowman (North Baltimore/ASU), Dave Durden (Cal), Bruce Gemmell (Nation’s Capital), Ray Looze (Indiana), David Marsh (SwimMAC) and Greg Meehan (Stanford). All served as members of the U.S. Olympic coaching staff in Rio.

Online fan voting, open from now through Friday, Nov. 11, will be used in part to select the winners. Proceeds from the event will benefit USA Swimming Foundation, which supports both Learn-to-Swim efforts and developmental swimming through the U.S. National Team.

Read the full release from USA Swimming here.